Who: Firelei Báez, Rosanne Cash, Moeko Fujii, Maira Kalman, Nico Muhly, Simon Schama, Aimee Ng, Xavier F. Salomon, Ian Wardropper
What: Virtual gala
Where: Frick Zoom
When: Monday, October 19, free - $50,000, 6:30
Why: For decades, one of my crucial respites has been the Frick Collection, the spectacular museum on East Seventieth St. and Fifth Ave. that houses endless masterpieces assembled by Pittsburgh industrialist Henry Clay Frick and his daughter, Helen Clay Frick. The Gilded Age mansion features one of New York City’s most beautiful indoor fountains and art treasures around every corner. But it will be a while before I am able to visit this austere institution, as it has been closed not because of the pandemic but for a major renovation; however, it is expecting to reopen in early 2021 in a temporary new location, taking over the former home of the Whitney and the Met Breuer on Madison Ave. The Frick has been active online during the coronavirus crisis, presenting “Frick Five” interviews and the hugely popular weekly series “Travels with a Curator” on Wednesdays and “Cocktails with a Curator” on Fridays, hosted by curator Aimee Ng and deputy director and chief curator Xavier F. Salomon. (You can read my May interview with viral superstar Salomon here; have a cocktail ready.)
And now you will be able to get a sneak peek at the Frick Madison while also looking back at the museum’s history at “Frick on the Move: A Virtual Gala,” an online fundraiser being held on October 19 at 6:30. The evening includes appearances by Firelei Báez, Rosanne Cash, Moeko Fujii, Maira Kalman, Nico Muhly, and Simon Schama; in addition, Ng will give a tour of the museum’s second floor, and Salomon will debut a special edition of “Cocktails with a Curator.” (The preferred cocktail is a White Russian or an Iced Ginger Coffee.) Admission is free, but donations will be accepted; gifts of $1,000 or more come with access to an exclusive behind-the-scenes virtual tour led by director Ian Wardropper. You can keep in touch with the Frick during the renovation through several ongoing online programs, including “Collecting Impressions: Six Centuries of Print Connoisseurship Part III” on October 21, “Symposium on the History of Art” on October 23, “Continue the Conversation: El Greco, Purification of the Temple” on October 28, and “Provenance Stories” on October 30.